How to Enroll In the Right Pharmacist Tech Training Program Near Huntsville Alabama
Now that you have decided to attain your pharmacy technician degree or certificate near HuntsvilleAL, you may be wondering how to pick the right program to receive your education and training. Of course the initial step is to locate colleges that offer the degree or diploma that you are interested in. Many prospective students start by searching for colleges that are within commuting distance of their residence, and then comparing the tuitions. While cost and location are significant concerns when deciding on a college, they are not the sole ones. Qualifications such as accreditation and reputation should be considered as well. And if you prefer studying in your home in front of your computer as opposed to in a classroom, then finding an accredited online school will also be included in your vetting process. Let's take a look at the degree and certification options available, and the advantages of online classes.
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Pharmacy Tech Training Programs
Individuals wishing to enroll in a pharmacy technician college are qualified provided that they have a high school diploma or a GED. There are essentially 2 alternatives to training to be a tech whether you enroll in a community college or a trade school. The first is to earn a certificate or a diploma, which typically can be accomplished in a year or less. These programs offer an introduction to the various aspects of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and usually include lab and classroom training. Numerous programs also require an internship at an accepted Huntsville AL pharmacy or similar facility. The second alternative is the Associate Degree program which generally takes about 2 years of studies. Although not needed for most entry level positions, it does furnish a more expansive education and can lead to more advanced positions or education in the future. Either program should provide the necessary level of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam should the graduate choose to become certified.
Pharmacy Tech Certifications Available
It is not required to earn certification in every state, but a large number of graduates of pharmacy technician colleges opt to get certified in order to be more competitive when seeking employment. Additionally, many Huntsville AL employers will only employ a tech that is certified. There are two organizations that provide certification:
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB)
The NHA requirements are that the candidate be at least 18 years old, be a high school graduate, has finished a training program, and has at least one year of professional experience. The PTCB only requires that the candidate has a high school diploma and passes their examination. Recertification is required every two years by both programs, which can be met by completing 20 hours of continuing education.
Pharmacist Tech Online Classes
Prior to deciding on a pharmacist tech online school, it's necessary to understand that most schools do require that a substantial part of the training be conducted in a clinical environment. This is commonly satisfied in a local Huntsville pharmacy or health center through an internship program. Students in most cases will have the benefit of working with a seasoned pharmacy tech in order to get some real world experience. Fortunately the balance or non-clinical training may be accessed over the internet in your Huntsville AL home or via any available computer. This option is more convenient for many students, particularly for those who continue to work while attaining their certificate or degree. And online schools are frequently less expensive than traditional options. Tuition and expenses for commuting and study materials can be decreased substantially. With both the online and the clinical training, a complete education is provided. But not all online schools are accredited, which is important for securing certification and employment (more on accreditation later). So verify that each online program you are reviewing is accredited by a recognized accrediting agency, for example the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are disciplined enough to learn with a less structured form of education, then online instruction may be the right option for you.
Enroll in the Best Huntsville Pharmacy Technician Course
Getting the ideal pharmacy technician training is a critical first step to beginning your career in a gratifying profession where assisting people with their health is your mission. In the past, most pharmacy techs were trained "on the job". These days, most pharmacists can no longer operate this way and much prefer to hire formally educated techs. Training is provided by technical colleges, vocational and trade schools, as well as community colleges. The majority of pharmacy tech colleges incorporate both laboratory and classroom work. As we have addressed in this article, it's important to choose a college that is accredited and will prep you for certification. This applies both for online classes and for those attended on campus. With the proper training and determination you can reach your goal of becoming a pharmacy tech in Huntsville Alabama.